Mailing List
Get the latest news by email.

Your email:

New Members

In order to serve you better, select your area code in the drop down list below.

Aller à la version française

2009 Honda TRX420PG CTE First Impressions


by Henri Lebarbé ,

The new TRX420PG CTE (Canadian Trail Edition) boasts surprising maneuverability, lightness and traction. While it shares many design cues with its larger siblings, the 420PG CTE stands out with an all-new and innovative multiple-clutch automatic transmission, Electronic Shift Program (ESP), and extra travel suspension, to provide decidedly sporty and pleasant riding dynamics for typiocal Canadian trails.

The new TRX420PG CTE (Canadian Trail Edition) boasts surprising maneuverability, lightness and traction.

Spirited and responsive
The longitudinally-mounted engine uses a balance shaft, and rubber mounts to eliminate virtually all vibrations. Based on the previous-generation 420 whose reliability is well known, this mill benefits from electronic fuel injection to provide a surprising level of performance and flexibility, not to mention a smooth idle and strong acceleration. For 2009, Honda engineers incorporated larger valves and a larger airbox -- improvements that certainly contribute to the more exciting behavior of the revised engine.

Honda's ESP system allows the rider to choose between automatic and manual shifting using push-buttons. The TRX420PG CTE contrasts with older models by relying on three ECU-controlled clutches mounted in series. The first one is a heavy-duty “centrifugal” clutch through which the torque is transferred to the gearbox.

This clutch stays engaged and locked when moving; gears changes are then performed through two other clutches inside the gearbox as per the commands from the ESP or rider-controlled buttons, depending on the selected mode. One secondary clutch controls 1st, 3rd an 5th gears, with the other one in charge of 2nd and 4th gears. These secondary clutches alternate to provide instantaneous and smooth gear changes, just like on current high performance cars from BMW, Audi, Ferrari or Porsche – not bad Hey?

What’s more, this transmission offers powerful engine braking; enough to make riding easier and thus reduce the use of the regular brakes in normal conditions. The transmission mode does not change after turning off the ignition, and switching from one mode to the other is easy thanks to a small, readily-accessible lever.

1 - 2 >>